Ever felt that God isn’t listening? And no prayer seems to be answered? As the slogan says: Keep calm and pray on. There was a man in the Bible, Daniel, who kept calm and prayed on. Let’s learn some precious truths about prayer from his experience.
Daniel set aside 3 weeks of mourning, fasting from good food and drinks to dedicate himself to prayer. I believe Daniel was praying about the Jewish people’s return to their homeland. Right now, they were all captives in Babylon (modern day Iraq). And Daniel was troubled so he seeked God about the future.
In those days I, Daniel, was mourning for three weeks. I ate no delicacies, no meat or wine entered my mouth, nor did I anoint myself at all, for the full three weeks.
He prayed earnestly for 21 days and he got an answer only at the end. Imagine praying 21 days with your prayers bouncing off the roof back to you. I wouldn’t have lasted that long but Daniel kept on praying.
What was the answer? An angel appeared before him and explained the reason for the delay:
Then he said to me, “Fear not, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand and humbled yourself before your God, your words have been heard, and I have come because of your words. The prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days, but Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I was left there with the kings of Persia.”
An angel might not visit you but hey, it’s possible. He tells Daniel some amazing things about what happens when we pray.
‘From the first day…your words have been heard’
God received Daniel’s words on the first day he prayed. There is no distance in prayer. The minute you pray is the minute it is sent. Much like an email but the speed and distance infinitely faster – and more reliable. When God hears your prayer requests, God responds in four ways: Yes, no, wait a while or I’ve got something better for you. From this story, a slow response does not always indicate no! That brings us to the next truth.
‘The prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me 21 days’
Satanic activity can hinder our prayers from being answered. The angel was fighting to bring the reply back to Daniel but the prince of Persia stopped him. I don’t know much about who this prince of Persia is but it must have been a powerful demon. Don’t lose hope! This demon was defeated, when the angel tagged in Michael to do a double team finisher. We have to be patient in prayer and keep an expectant heart like Daniel did. God wants us to keep on praying! God’s response may be late (in our perspective) but never stopped.
Keep calm and pray on.